Frequently Asked Questions
How do I become a volunteer?
Will I need references or to attend an
None of our volunteering opportunities require
references or for you to attend an interview at this time. On
some occasions, we may meet you for an informal chat about the
role/work you would like to support.
Is there much paperwork involved?
To start off volunteers are requested to fill
in a volunteer registration form which can be completed
online or via a downloadable hard copy (available on request).
Before volunteers begin their projects they agree to a
Volunteer agreement, to read relevant risk assessments and
will be briefed on the activity to be undertaken by
council staff or exisiting volunteers.
Support is available for anyone who would
require assistance in completing the form.
How do I apply?
Fill in a volunteer registration form, ticking the volunteering
areas you are interested in, and we will be in touch with further
details (see Community Volunteering
main page for the online registration form).
What do I do about training, equipment etc.?
Will I get any training I need?
Training will be offered for any of those
volunteer opportunities that require it. This could be a formal
setting (for use of tools/machinery) or more casual in nature,
led by the event leader at the start of an event/task.
What will be provided?
Any equipment and additional protective
clothing will be provided by the event leaders. With some
volunteering opportunities you will be able to access supplies of
certain items and request additional items as and when you need
What will I get out of it?
Will I get paid?
All of our volunteering opportunities are
unpaid. However we will provide necessary tools to aid the
completion of volunteer tasks.
What are the benefits of volunteering?
As a volunteer, you are contributing to the
community but you can also benefit personally. Some of the
many benefits of volunteering can include:
- increased personal satisfaction
- meeting like minded people
- learning new skills or maintaining existing
- gaining work experience
- becoming more active in the community
- enjoying the great outdoors
-Improved health and wellbeing
How much of my time do I need to give?
How many hours do I have to do?
With all volunteering opportunities you can
give as little or as much time as you like. Some opportunities are
event based but volunteers do not need to stay for a minimum amount
Can I volunteer short term?
Yes, all of our volunteering opportunities are very flexible.
So, if you are in between jobs, on a college break, or just have a
bit of spare time at the weekend we will have something to suit
What if the task if not for me?
What happens if I don’t like the role?
That's fine. Please contact us to discuss, we
can look at ways to adapt the roles to suit, or help volunteers to
find alternative volunteering opportunities.
What happens if I can’t do the tasks?
If you have any issues or difficulties with
the task, equipment, hours please get in touch or talk to
the council's Events and Community Engagement Officer or
What if i have an accident
Please report any accidents or near misses to the event
Am I insured whilst volunteering?
All Bedford Borough Council volunteering
opportunities are covered by the Council's Public Liability
Insurance. Volunteers will be required to sign in on arrival and
this activates your insurance cover whilst in the process of
volunteering at that event/session. When work is unsupervised,
volunteers will be required to adhere to their 'Volunteer
Agreement' and 'Risk Assessments' regarding use of equipment
and behaviour, in accordance with our insurance requirements.
If personal circumstances affect my volunteering?
Can I claim benefits if I’m volunteering?
If you are in receipt of benefits, you should check with the
relevant local benefits office whether there are any restrictions
on the type and quantity of voluntary work you can be involved.
Do I get expenses?
Out of pocket expenses may be available and should be discussed
with the event co-ordinator or session leader.
What happens if I’m sick?
If your volunteer contact is expecting
your attendance, please let them know if you are unable to attend
due to sickness. In the case of long term sickness please advise
the Event and Community Engagement Officer that you won't be able
to continue for a prolonged period of time.
What do I need to be a volunteer?
Do I need a car to volunteer?
No. You may be sent information on
volunteering opportunities out of your remit, but you don't have to
take up any opportunities that are too far away.
Can I volunteer if I have a criminal
We do not ask our volunteers to declare any
criminal convictions. If you want to discuss this further please
contact the Events and Community Engagement Officer for Bedford
Borough Council (01234) 228759.
I have disabilities, can I still volunteer?
Yes. Some of our volunteering
opportunities may have restrictions due to the nature of the site
or equipment required, but we aim to ensure there is an
opportunity for everyone to volunteer, please do not hesitate to
contact us to discuss any individual needs.
I am not a UK citizen, can I still
Yes, you are welcome to volunteer at any of our events.
I’m looking for paid work, will volunteering
Volunteering is a great way of learning new skills, networking,
gaining experience and confidence. All of which will be
advantageous when applying for work.
Do I have to live in Bedford Borough?
No, but you must be willing to travel into the Borough to
undertake volunteering. Most areas have Volunteer Centres that can
direct you to local volunteering opportunities.
Do I need any special skills/experience?
No, we offer training or support to carry out
all of our volunteering opportunities.
Any other questions?
If you have any other questions about
volunteering with Bedford Borough Council please do not hesitate to
Phone: 01234 228759